GIRLS BASKETBALL

Smith, Coleman enjoy 'homecoming' win at Bolingbrook

2014-01-14T22:00:00Z 2014-01-15T01:01:06Z Smith, Coleman enjoy 'homecoming' win at BolingbrookPhil Arvia Times Correspondent nwitimes.com
January 14, 2014 10:00 pm  • 

BOLINGBROOK | At Bolingbrook High School, Tony Smith is history.

Yes, the four state titles in seven seasons are kind of history. But also, the first-year Homewood-Flossmoor coach, after 12 years as the Raiders' coach, is yesterday's news.

"Everything's different," he said. "The bench used to on the other side of the court. The lights are different — you can see the court now. They got a new scoreboard.

"The trophy case, they switched everything around. Football's now front and center. All our trophies are in the dark, in the corner.

"I'm definitely old, in the past."

Just like the 93-game SouthWest Suburban Conference winning streak he helped fashion.

That was ended Tuesday by Smith's Vikings. The Times' No. 1 team ran away from Bolingbrook 77-44 behind 28 points, six steals, six rebounds and four assists from Amarah Coleman, who transferred to H-F from Bolingbrook last summer along with three other players who started Tuesday for the Vikings.

The Illinois-bound guard, the subject of some social media trash talk leading up to the contest, conceded she had this game circled "from Day 1 of conditioning." Yet, Twitter, she said, had nothing to do with it.

"I was fired up," she said, "but I was fired up just to win, just to beat Bolingbrook."

As for ending the conference winning streak, she said, "It means a lot to me. I know how it feels to have the passion to want to keep winning here."

H-F (12-2, 5-0 in the SouthWest Suburban Blue) also got 14 points and six rebounds from Faith Suggs, while Lexi Smith added 10 points and five boards. Bolingbrook (9-3, 4-1) was led by Aysia Bugg's 11 points and Ryaen Johnson's six rebounds.

H-F led just 13-11 after the first quarter.

"They were a little excited," Smith said of his players. "They didn't run any offense. They didn't play any defense. … There was no flow, and we did a good job of helping it have no flow.

"We were playing 100 miles per hour."

Coleman didn't slow down so much as put the hammer down to open the second quarter. She had a pair of steals that she took the other way for layups to kick off a 19-2 that put the H-F lead in double-digits for good.

Coleman finished with 15 points and four steals in the half, though she saved likely her most spectacular play for midway through the third quarter. On the defensive end, she blocked a Bugg shot and cleared the rebound, then took the ball coast-to-coast for a layup giving H-F a 42-22 lead.

"Amarah Coleman is a player-of-the-year type of kid," Smith said. "People should look at her and start to know that now."

Somebody knows something. H-F's win came as the Vikings were elevated to No. 1 in the Class 4A state rankings.

It's enough to make Smith forget he still has a house in Bolingbrook.

"H-F is starting to feel like home now," he said. "They can put those trophies in the corner if they want. We're going to start our own thing at H-F."

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